Monthly Archives: July 2021

Newsletter for games through 7-25-21

Trade deadline!!!!

All trades must be completed by the lineup deadline next week, August 3. Your last chance to catch Gordie and Ben in the Leo’s “top traders” lists…or dump your least favorite player…or curse the players you trade for by having them all land on the disabled list after you acquire them (Trout and Rendon for deGrom)….or find that magical player combination that makes both teams slightly worse…or turn over your entire roster, as Adam is on the brink of doing…Eight trades since last week, involving 13 owners…if you’re feeling gun-shy, just focus on the fact that no matter what you do you won’t do as poorly as Jerry DiPoto…I think the rest of the AL West was checking to see if the Astro sanctions prevented them from invoking the “no take backsies” rule…

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No matter what you think about the Cleveland name change, it’s worth remembering that in the past the Cleveland professional baseball effort has been called both the “Cleveland Forest Citys” and the “Cleveland Infants,” who one imagines had a bitter rivalry with the Chicago Orphans…I’m sticking with the ASFBL monicker “Cleveland Unreasonable Men” until Skrovan tells me otherwise…it’s more poignant than the Raymonds…the Giants are having trouble keeping pace with the actual team, but they have the best real-WHIP of any ASFBL team…Milwaukee is just behind them, 1.07 to 1.08…Yankee batters have the best walk percentage, getting the free pass 11% of the time…best real OPS goes to, in order, the Jays, Chisox, and Angels…those are the Angels without Mike Trout…surprisingly, the Padres have the most actual stolen bases…the NL week went to the Braves, Cardinals, and Giants, who all finished 5-2…Braves used it to move into first, Giants used it to move into the second wildcard spot….I swear to God I should be able to get my fantasy Mets to .500 just by batting Alonso third…Cards proved they are a dangerous team you don’t want to take for granted in a late-season series you need to win…Baltimore and Houston ran the table in the AL, the Astros pulling it off without anyone giving them a closer for free…the Astro mark broke a tie and moved them into first, and the always-active John Weerts navigated Oakland to a 4-2 week and has them lurking 3.5 back…as of now the Oakland-Anaheim-Houston race is the most competitive in the AL, although the second wild-card spot is still wide open with about a third of the season left….although Baltimore had the big week, the Jays just keep turning in winning weeks and are high atop the AL East….They’re 23-7 over their last 30…and a shout out to Arizona and Minnesota, who hold the top 2 spots in the WOR standings….Tampa Bay is only 3 games out of a wildcard spot and a few good weeks could push them into the playoffs…actual Phillies are struggling but the ASFBL club is 10-5 in inter-league games…tied with the Dodgers for the best in the NL…here’s hoping none of your vaccinated players end up on the covid-DL…or, if they’re pitching like Jerod Eickhoff, that they’re asymptomatic and you at least get a free waiver…

Feats and Failures

Steven Duggar (San Francisco) struck out 4 times (on 7/19/2021 against Los Angeles) 
Bradley Zimmer (Cleveland) struck out 4 times (on 7/20/2021 against Houston) 
Bobby Bradley (Cleveland) struck out 4 times (on 7/20/2021 against Houston) 
Nicky Lopez (Kansas City) stole 3 bases (on 7/20/2021 against Milwaukee) 
Tim Anderson (Chicago (CWS))  had 5 hits (on 7/20/2021 against Minnesota) 
Austin Riley (Atlanta) hit 6 RBI (on 7/21/2021 against San Diego) 
Kevin Pillar (New York (NYM)) struck out 4 times (on 7/21/2021 against Cincinnati) 
Greg Allen (New York (NYY)) struck out 4 times (on 7/21/2021 against Philadelphia) 
Robbie Ray (Toronto) struck out 11 batters (on 7/21/2021 against Boston) 
Lance McCullers Jr. (Houston) struck out 11 batters (on 7/21/2021 against Cleveland) 
Walker Buehler (Los Angeles) struck out 15 batters (on 7/21/2021 against San Francisco) 
Taylor Trammell (Seattle) struck out 4 times (on 7/22/2021 against Oakland) 
Austin Slater (San Francisco) struck out 4 times (on 7/22/2021 against Los Angeles) 
Travis Demeritte (Atlanta) struck out 4 times (on 7/23/2021 against Philadelphia) 
Carlos Rodon (Chicago (CWS)) struck out 11 batters (on 7/23/2021 against Milwaukee) 
Harrison Bader (St. Louis)  had 5 hits (on 7/24/2021 against Cincinnati) 
Mike Zunino (Tampa Bay) hit 3 homers (on 7/24/2021 against Cleveland) 
Teoscar Hernandez (Toronto) struck out 4 times (on 7/24/2021 against New York (NYM)) 
Kyle Wright (Atlanta) struck out 11 batters (on 7/25/2021 against Philadelphia) 
Cristian Javier (Baltimore) struck out 11 batters (on 7/25/2021 against Washington) 
Teoscar Hernandez (Toronto) struck out 4 times (on 7/25/2021 against New York (NYM)) 
Shohei Ohtani (Anaheim) struck out 11 batters (on 7/25/2021 against Minnesota) 
Mitch Garver (Minnesota) struck out 4 times (on 7/25/2021 against Anaheim) 

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Newsletter for games through 7-18-21

Trade Notes

Two more weeks to make trades…from the email chatter it sounds like there’s plenty of interest….five more trades last week, including fashion icon Joe Kelly, slugger (and presumably descendant of winemakers) Joey Gallo, and closer (and probable descendant of an undertaker) Kendall Graveman….deadline is August 3.

Shoulda kept me

Elvis Andrus (Oakland) hit for the cycle on 7/9/2021 against Texas…don’t pin this on Ben Brockreide, but I’m sure the fantasy karma was building up in Elvis’ favor…his D&D “revenge” setting was at 20…and now that I’ve got a script that will check no-hitters for me, I’m going to have to write one to track cycles…

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I try to contain myself from commenting on actual games, but if you’ll indulge me this observation about the Nationals: They allowed 47 runs in the 4 games around the all-star break, and then scored 26 runs in the next 2 games including an 18-run outburst…right in the middle they lost 3-1 to the Giants, and every other game had 10 runs or more by at least one team…ASFBL Nats went 3-0…so did both the Dodgers and Giants...those teams square off head to head to start next week…Jays and Rays both went 3-0, and were the only AL teams to do it…they also rank 1 and 2 in the AL East…Angels nudged a game up on the Astros in the airtight AL West…Miami gained a game on the Atlanta team and is now within a half game of first…five AL teams are within 2.5 games of a wildcard spot…best ASFBL offense this year so far is the Dodgers, at 484 runs, with the Astros right behind at 480…Oakland is 7th, which is a little encouraging since the actual team is 13th…don’t know if this is boring or a victory for simulation accuracy, but the top 3 scoring teams in MLB and the Dodgers, Astros, and Chisox, and the top 3 scoring teams in ASFBL are exactly the same…Jays lead the ASFBL with 146 homers…Texas is 3rd with 134….Indians have the best team defense, and have robbed 32 hits over the first half…Reds are second…the big statistical issue in MLB is that strikeouts are way up, and the Brewers and Chisox lead the ASFBL, with an identical 993 Ks so far…Dodgers have the best team WHIP (1.06) and the bullpen has allowed a measly 6 of 94 inherited runners to score…but the Cubs have the best bullpen ERA at 2.61…the Brewers have the most shutouts in the league with 10….although Shohei Ohtani leads the MLB in homers, Tatis Jr. has him in the ASFBL…but if you count the homers Ohtani has allowed as a pitcher they’re tied…

Big things in short weeks

Tucker Barnhart (Cincinnati) struck out 4 times (on 7/5/2021 against Kansas City) 
Adam Engel (Chicago (CWS)) hit 6 RBI (on 7/7/2021 against Minnesota) 
Elias Diaz (Colorado) hit 6 RBI (on 7/7/2021 against Arizona) 
Taylor Trammell (Seattle) struck out 4 times (on 7/8/2021 against New York (NYY)) 
Hunter Dozier (Kansas City) struck out 4 times (on 7/8/2021 against Cleveland) 
Zack Short (Detroit) struck out 4 times (on 7/8/2021 against Minnesota) 
Austin Meadows (Tampa Bay) hit 3 homers (on 7/9/2021 against Toronto) 
Elvis Andrus (Oakland)  hit for the cycle! (on 7/9/2021 against Texas) 
Carlos Rodon (Chicago (CWS)) struck out 16 batters (on 7/10/2021 against Baltimore) 
Jazz Chisholm (Miami) struck out 4 times (on 7/10/2021 against Atlanta) 
Lance Lynn (Chicago (CWS)) struck out 11 batters (on 7/16/2021 against Houston) 
Joey Gallo (St. Louis) struck out 4 times (on 7/16/2021 against San Francisco) 
Patrick Wisdom (Chicago (CC)) struck out 4 times (on 7/16/2021 against Arizona) 
Cody Bohanek (New York (NYM)) struck out 4 times (on 7/17/2021 against Pittsburgh) 
Ryan McMahon (Colorado) struck out 4 times (on 7/17/2021 against Los Angeles) 
Patrick Sandoval (Anaheim) struck out 11 batters (on 7/17/2021 against Seattle) 
Jordan Montgomery (New York (NYY)) struck out 11 batters (on 7/18/2021 against Boston)

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Newsletter for games through 7-11-21

Celebrating the first half

Hoping your all-star break is a great one! Time to take stock of the first half:

BEST OVERALL: Most wins (64) and best record (.703) go to Rick Wynne and his Dodgers…AL best goes to Leo at 59 and .648…bonus to Al Benedek and the Friars for the second-highest win total (62) and second-best overall record (.667), which gets you second place in your division if you share it with Rick…kudos to division leaders Danny Wildes, Gordon Leckie, Johnny Mac, Jim Casey and Greg Achten. A tiebreaker is going to Greg and Jim for the closest divisional title race , since they are tied in the AL West.

BEST RACE: Ignoring what I’ve already said about Jim and Greg being tied in the AL West and Rick and Al battling it out in the NL West, Steve’s Miami team is making a run in the NL East and Chris Zewiske’s Brewers are within 5 in the NL central. Given the wide leads the Jays and Chisox have, the wildcard battle in the AL is intense, with Tim Walsh and the AL West runner-up in the lead with 49 wins, but Alan’s Rays (45), Mike Mendoza’s Royals (47), John Weerts‘ As’ (47) are all margins-of-error away, and the Yankees, Indians, and Rangers are all within striking distance with a good second half. The NL West is where it’s at in the senior circuit, and Jeremy’s Giants and Hugh’s Rockies are both above .500 and ready to challenge for the second wildcard spot.

BEST IMPROVEMENT: The WOR race is tight, and with the Royals and Cubs contending for playoff spots, the WOR standings are most relevant to Ben Leckie’s Diamondbacks (+14) and Mark Chen’s Orioles (+9). Ben Brockreide’s Texas club deserves note (+7) and Rob Perkins has improved the Pirates (+3).

MASH UNIT AWARDS: You only get free waivers by moving an injured player off the active roster; I don’t really track how they get used, but the totals this year are staggering: Giants (21), Yankees (19), Mariners-Nationals-Rays (15), and the Phillies, Reds, Dodgers, Twins, Brewers, and Rockies all have double-digit totals. Jeremy could literally swap out 80% of his roster and not have to waive a single player. Some of this is covid related, but that’s a lot of roster flexibility…

Truncated comments this week due to my first return to the office in 18 months…there’s more dusting to do here than Hank Aaron’s trophy case…hope you can all make it to Friday without withdrawal symptoms…I’ve had to resort to watching CONCACAF matches to avoid tremors…

Feats and failures

Tucker Barnhart (Cincinnati) struck out 4 times (on 7/5/2021 against Kansas City) 
Adam Engel (Chicago (CWS)) hit 6 RBI (on 7/7/2021 against Minnesota) 
Elias Diaz (Colorado) hit 6 RBI (on 7/7/2021 against Arizona) 
Taylor Trammell (Seattle) struck out 4 times (on 7/8/2021 against New York (NYY)) 
Hunter Dozier (Kansas City) struck out 4 times (on 7/8/2021 against Cleveland) 
Zack Short (Detroit) struck out 4 times (on 7/8/2021 against Minnesota) 
Austin Meadows (Tampa Bay) hit 3 homers (on 7/9/2021 against Toronto) 
Elvis Andrus (Oakland)  hit for the cycle! (on 7/9/2021 against Texas) 
Carlos Rodon (Chicago (CWS)) struck out 16 batters (on 7/10/2021 against Baltimore) 
Jazz Chisholm (Miami) struck out 4 times (on 7/10/2021 against Atlanta) 

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Newsletter for games through 7-4-21

Making the Most of the Worst

So you do the best in ASFBL when the actual team tanks but your fantasy club does well, which can mean just going .500. Below is a list of the 6 teams struggling the most in real life and how the ASFBL clubs have responded.

TeamReal Last 10ASFBL Last 10Comments
CUBS0-106-4Gordie is +6 WOR, so his rise in the WOR standings are almost entirely the product of making progress while the actual team collapses.
CLEVELAND1-94-64-6 is nothing to write home about, but it did get Steven 3 games against the actual club. His last trade was June 9 where he traded Jake Bauers, presumably not because Jake was facing his namesake’s issues with the domestic violence policy.
ARIZONA3-74-6Only one game better over the last 10 but 17 better overall, which is a doggone impressive WOR number. Doing anything with this club is remarkable, as they are clearly in rebuilding mode.
KANSAS CITY3-75-5If not for the overall WOR prowess of the Chisox and Twins this team could be in playoff contention…they’d be challenging for first in 3 other divisions.
YANKEES3-72-8The fantasy team is matching the real team’s slide, but Mark Yee is not his father and will steady the course.
OAKLAND3-75-5John has endured a real team win streak that didn’t come with good overall stats and is now creeping back to even as the actual club slides…eyeballing it I think he’s made at least one trade a week every week since at least the start of June, so it won’t surprise me if he passes the actual club.

Alien invasion

What’s the right word for a player you have on your ASFBL team that isn’t on that team in MLB? I struggled…foreigner? Acquiree? Aquisition? Player-From-Elsewhere? Inspired by the Las Vegas 51s, I went with “alien.” Looking at the active ASFBL rosters last week, you can tell which teams have both been the most active in acquiring players AND using them: Adam’s Phillies lead the way with 11 players on the active roster who are not Phillies in real life. Right behind are Mike’s Royals at 9, Jim’s Astros tie with Ben’s Rangers at 8, and then it drops to the Chisox, Dodgers, and Rockies who are tied at 5. That means 23 teams have 4 or fewer aliens on the roster, which means the overwhelming number of players in the ASFBL are on the MLB roster as well, although roles and management differ quite a bit. On the other hand, only two ASFBL teams are rolling with a full roster of active players from the real team, so everyone seems to tweak. My takeaway? It’s not just who you’ve got, owners seem to enjoy getting involved in how you set the roster and set the lineups.

Actual Oddity

I don’t know if you saw this, but in the Atlanta/Miami game last week Miami starter Pablo Lopez hit the first batter on the first pitch, got ejected, the batter came around to score, and the game ended 1-0. That has to be the first time in MLB history a starting pitcher has taken the loss after throwing exactly one pitch. Filing that under the “things you can’t code for” category…

Noteworthy

Kudos to Hugh’s Rockies, who had the best NL record last week, are +6 WOR, and 18-12 over the last 30…Ben had the Rangers at 5-1 in a wide-open division for the best record in AL…Johnny Mac gained more distance in the AL East although Boston is starting to rumble and Mark Chen is way over-performing the actual club…Jays, Bosox and Orioles all had winning weeks…my hat goes off to Leo, who is always on-point, had a 5-2 week and is 19-11 over the last 30…Greg Acthen has kept his team above water and with the actual club finally clawing its way back to .500 he’s hanging to a first-place tie with Jim Casey….Chris Zewiske has a powerful Brewers club and turned in the best record in the NL central, challenging the Cubs…Al Benedek is 2 games behind in the loss column behind Rick Wynne’s powerful Dodger club in a race that’s just as fun in ASFBL as it is in real life…Jeremy Moore’s fantasy Giants are stating to play like the real club, and 4 teams have a viable shot at the playoffs in the NL west…a .500 record and +6 WOR gets you 4th place in that dogfight…

Feats and Failures

Bobby Dalbec (Boston) struck out 4 times (on 6/28/2021 against Kansas City) 
Franchy Cordero (Boston) struck out 4 times (on 6/28/2021 against Kansas City) 
Kris Bryant (Chicago (CC)) struck out 5 times (on 6/28/2021 against Milwaukee) 
German Marquez (Colorado) struck out 11 batters (on 6/28/2021 against Pittsburgh) 
Brandon Crawford (San Francisco) hit 3 homers (on 6/28/2021 against Los Angeles) 
Max Stassi (Anaheim) struck out 4 times (on 6/29/2021 against New York (NYY)) 
Gary Sanchez (Philadelphia) struck out 4 times (on 6/29/2021 against Miami) 
Kevin Pillar (New York (NYM)) struck out 4 times (on 6/29/2021 against Atlanta) 
Trey Amburgey (New York (NYY)) struck out 4 times (on 7/1/2021 against Anaheim) 
Luis Campusano (San Diego) struck out 4 times (on 7/2/2021 against Philadelphia) 
Dominic Smith (New York (NYM))  had 5 hits (on 7/2/2021 against New York (NYY)) 
Collin McHugh (Tampa Bay) struck out 11 batters (on 7/2/2021 against Toronto) 
Trey Amburgey (New York (NYY)) struck out 4 times (on 7/3/2021 against New York (NYM)) 
Teoscar Hernandez (Toronto) struck out 4 times (on 7/3/2021 against Tampa Bay) 
Tommy Pham (San Diego) struck out 4 times (on 7/3/2021 against Philadelphia) 
Robel Garcia (Houston) struck out 4 times (on 7/3/2021 against Cleveland) 
Jose Quintana (Anaheim) struck out 11 batters (on 7/3/2021 against Baltimore) 
Kevin Gausman (San Francisco) struck out 11 batters (on 7/3/2021 against Arizona) 
Zack Wheeler (Philadelphia) struck out 11 batters (on 7/4/2021 against San Diego) 
Sonny Gray (Cincinnati) struck out 13 batters (on 7/4/2021 against Chicago (CC)) 
Ozzie Albies (Atlanta) hit 3 homers (on 7/4/2021 against Miami) 
Ozzie Albies (Atlanta) hit 7 RBI (on 7/4/2021 against Miami)

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